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Washington State University delays start of new semester

WSU canceled classes on Monday and Tuesday as winter storms closed passes and made travel to Pullman difficult.

PULLMAN, Wash. — Washington State University students will have an additional two days added on to their winter break. The University announced on Friday that it will be delaying the start of its new semester because of road closures and travel challenges across the state.

The WSU Pullman campus canceled classes for Jan. 10 and 11, 2022. 

WSU made the decision based on severe winter weather in the state that has closed all the major passes and made travel in many areas, including Pullman, difficult. 

According to the Washington State Department of Transportation, the passes are expected to be closed until at least Sunday due to snow slides, downed trees, and the threat of avalanches. The closures include Snoqualmie, Stevens, White and Blewett passes. 

Also, flooding forced the closure of a 20-mile stretch of I-5 in Lewis County on Friday, making travel out of Seattle nearly impossible.

WSU said its facilities and operations in Pullman will be open for their normal business hours on Monday and Tuesday, weather permitting.

All other WSU campuses, including Spokane, are expected to begin classes on time on Monday and Tuesday.

While WSDOT hopes to have the passes open on Sunday, their crews face major challenges. Crews were working Friday to address avalanche issues and hope to be able to plow and clear the roads starting Saturday.

In a statement on Twitter, WSDOT said "We recognize the importance of these corridors but nothing is more important than the safety of our crews and the public. We are prepared to move in once it is safe, and we appreciate your patience during this challenging situation."

WATCH MORE: Schools closed, roads slick in Inland Northwest on Friday

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